Vietnam is planning to allow international flights again as of December 15. The Ministry of Transport has submitted a plan in this regard to the Prime Minister. Depending on the country of origin, it may be mandatory to apply for a visa Vietnam.
The vaccination rate rises after a slow start
For a long time, Vietnam struggled with its vaccination rate. At the beginning of August, less than 1% of the population was fully vaccinated. An important reason for this was that Vietnam, like many other countries in Southeast Asia and Africa, had a structural shortage of vaccines. But the course of the coronavirus outbreak in Vietnam also played a role. For a long time, Vietnam had very few infections and deaths. Critics claim that for this reason, the government did not see the need to start vaccinating early.
Meanwhile, the Vietnamese population has been rapidly vaccinated. Almost 56 million Vietnamese are fully vaccinated (57.5% of the population). Although the country still lags behind neighbouring countries such as Cambodia (80.9% fully vaccinated) and Thailand (60.9% fully vaccinated), the Vietnamese government believes that the time is ripe to reopen the borders.
Opening of the border in two phases
The Ministry of Transportʼs plan will be implemented in two phases. In the first phase, starting on 15 December, flights will be admitted from countries that the Vietnamese government considers important for economic and political cooperation. These include America, Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. According to the Ministry of Transport, most investors and specialised workers come from these countries, which the Vietnamese economy desperately needs to recover from the economic consequences of the coronavirus. But these countries have also been chosen to make it easier for Vietnamese citizens to return to Vietnam. The vast majority of Vietnamese living abroad live, work or study in these countries.
The flights will initially operate only from Noi Bai airport in Hanoi and Tan Son Nhat airport in Ho Chi Minh City.
In the second phase, starting in January 2022, flights from more countries will be allowed. These include Malaysia, Hong Kong, France, Germany, Australia and Russia. Other airports in Vietnam, such as the Đà Nẵng airport, will also welcome international flights.
Depending on the progress of the reopening of the borders, flights from more countries may be allowed.
Quarantine and vaccination rules still unknown
It is still unclear what additional conditions travellers will have to meet in order to enter Vietnam. The plan of the Ministry of Transport does not mention any new COVID rules for international travellers. The current rules state that travellers who are allowed to travel to Vietnam on an exceptional basis must spend 14 days in quarantine. It is expected that the new conditions will be very similar to those of other countries in the region, such as Cambodia. This means that travellers will most likely have to be fully vaccinated and have a negative test result before departure to avoid having to go into quarantine.
Applying for a visa Vietnam
DThe Vietnamese government has not yet announced any changes with regard to the visa. Many countries, such as the Netherlands, require a visa to travel to Vietnam. This is in addition to the vaccination certificate and a test certificate. You can apply for a visa online and it is valid for a stay of 30 days. On average the visa is issued in one week, in case of urgent applications in three working days.